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Freeland’s 'affordability plan' will help Canadians with inflation, but not immediately: economist

The federal government is expected to unveil its hotly anticipated "national affordability plan" — the centerpiece of its fall economic statement — on Tuesday.

Finance Minister Chrystia Freeland has hinted that her government will take steps to help Canadians cope with the rising cost of living, which has caused inflation to tick upwards to its highest level in more than a decade.

But one economist says the government's plan, while offering some relief in the long run, probably won't help Canadians much this year.

"What we are looking for is immediate relief, but what we are getting is a plan to make sure that inflation doesn't get worse in the future," said CIBC chief economist Royce Mendes.

"So while they are certainly going to be taking steps to help with affordability issues in the long run, in the short run, I don't think we're going to see a lot of relief."

Inflation in Canada rose in September to 2.2 per cent, its highest level in more than a decade, according to the latest figures from Statistics Canada.

While that is still within the Bank of Canada's target range of one to three per cent, it is well above the one per cent level that economists
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